Wisconsin Supreme Court
Insurance — truckers policies
Where a trailer-truck was involved in an accident while on the way to a maintenance facility for repairs, the non-trucking use policy provides coverage.
“We determine that neither of the exclusions in Acceptance’s policy precludes coverage. The facts of record do not support the application of exclusion 14(b). Zeverino was not using the semi-tractor ‘in the business of’ Taylor Truck Line because the repairs here did not further Taylor’s commercial interests. There is nothing in the record that shows the repairs were required by the lease. Additionally, the repairs were not done pursuant to orders from Taylor Truck Line, and they were not necessary for the semi-tractor to continue its service.”
“Further, Acceptance’s argument that coverage is excluded because Zeverino was en route to the business purpose of obtaining maintenance reflects an overly expansive interpretation of the text of exclusion 14(a). Like the court of appeals, we are concerned that its interpretation may render coverage illusory. Instead, in examining the text of exclusion 14(a) we determine that it refers to maintenance necessary to allow the semi-tractor to carry property. It is undisputed that the semi-tractor could and did carry loads without the repairs to the grille and oil filler tube.”
Attorneys: For Appellant: Noel, Charles J., Minneapolis; For Respondent: McNee, Michael W., Minneapolis; Novotny, Tamara Lynn, Minneapolis